Location tracking (administrator's guide)

Learn how to set up location tracking for your team, view their current and historic location data and steps to ensure reliable tracking

Sergey Shurygin avatar
Written by Sergey Shurygin
Updated over a week ago

Location tracking is a Mapsly feature that allows organizations to record their users' location data and show their current location and the history of movements over the last 30 days to Administrators and other authorized personnel. Location data is tracked by mobile devices with installed Mapsly mobile app and stored on Mapsly servers.

This article is for Mapsly Administrators and covers the concept of location tracking in Mapsly, viewing users' current and historic location data and recommendations for ensuring uninterrupted tracking. For the user guide to location tracking that covers activation of locations tracking on a mobile device and automatic (de-)activation of tracking by schedule, visit this article.


Mapsly location tracking has minimal overhead on battery life

Mapsly automatically suspends tracking while a device is stationary, and automatically resumes when it starts moving. This helps significantly minimize the impact of continuous location tracking on the battery.

Location tracking works even if app is closed or after device rebooted

Even if a user closes the Mapsly app or reboots the phone, location tracking will continue.

Location tracking can automatically turn on and off by schedule

The user may choose to automatically activate location tracking when their working day starts and automatically deactivate it when it ends.

Location data is automatically removed after 30 days

Mapsly keeps only the most recent 30 days of location history and automatically removes older data.

Location tracking can only be activated on the device itself

Only the end user can activate location tracking on their device. Mapsly administrators cannot do that.

How to start location tracking on a device, or turn on automatic activation of tracking by schedule

Recommendations for ensuring reliable tracking

Please note that both iOS and Android limit background activity of applications to conserve battery, which may in certain cases prevent tracking from working properly. To ensure reliable tracking, please make sure the following recommendations are followed across your team:

1- Open Mapsly app on frequently, at least once per 3-4 hours - this will prevent the operating system from suppressing Mapsly's background activity.

2- Keep Wi-Fi always ON - this together with access to the device's motion sensor (see #4) will ensure proper switching between the moving mode, when location is tracked, and the stationary mode, when tracking is paused.

If a user turns Wi-Fi OFF, this may require them to move much further before the operating system will notify Mapsly of the movement, which may cause partial loss of location data or a failure to resume tracking after a stop at all.

3- Make sure Mapsly's access to the device's location is ALWAYS (not only While in use) - this will allow Mapsly to track location even while a user is not using the app or after they rebooted the device.

4- Make sure Mapsly has access to physical activity - this will allow Mapsly to pause tracking while a user is not moving (to conserve battery) and resume tracking once the device is moving again.

5- On an Android device, users should carefully follow instructions at dontkillmyapp.com for your particular device to turn off excessive battery optimization, system-wide and for Mapsly app in particular. This will help prevent the operating system from suppressing Mapsly's background activity.

How to view current and historic locations of your team

Turn on access to Device and/or Location history objects

The Device system object contains your device's current location data, and the Location history system object contains the history of their movements over the last 30 days.

By default, these objects are hidden to all Mapsly user profiles including Administrators.

If you are an Administrator of your Mapsly org account, you can turn it on by going to main menu -> Setup -> Profiles & Permissions and turning on Device and Location History objects under System for the Administrator user profile:

If you'd like other user profiles to have access to your team's current location and/or their history of movements, you may turn these either or these objects or both of them to other user profiles as well.

IMPORTANT! Each user owns their location records, so if you'd like another user profile to have access only to their own location history, be sure to set Location history's Non-owner access level to Hide, while setting the Owner access level to:

  • View: if you'd like to give the user an opportunity to see their history but not remove their location history records;

  • Modify: if you'd like to let your users to remove their location history records.

If you set Device's or Location history's Non-owner access level for another user profile to View or Modify, they will be able to see other see other users' current or history location data as well.

How to see your team's devices info

Once you turned on access to the Device system object, you will see it in the Table view:

You can view useful information about your users' devices, such as their location permission, "is tracking", "auto-enable tracking", device model, etc. This data can be useful for verifying that the users set up tracking correctly.

How to see your team's current location on the map

Once you turned on access to the Device system object, you will see it on the Layer's pane:

We have pre-created two map layers on the Device object for you:

  • Online layer shows users from whose device Mapsly received updated location within the last 15 minutes.

  • Devices who have not been active for more than 15 minutes are in the Offline layer.

You may customize the markers for these layers or add more layers, if necessary.

Note. Device "move" between layers in real time as Mapsly receives updated locations from them - it is not necessary to refresh the map.

How to see your team's history of movements on the map

You can use the location history viewer to display location history of your team by user and date:


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